As vendors and owners, I think much of our decision-making is based on the belief that customers, when engaging with the dealership, are intimidated by the dealership. Let’s all simply agree that intimidation is another word/form/symptom of FEAR.

Of course, in the Old Days, there was no debate: APB Selling was all about exploiting the fact that “poor, wary, unsuspecting” customers had to come to the dealership to get some information about the car they just saw on TV, or in a magazine, or in the neighbor’s driveway. APB was all about getting to a simple question: “Why Not Now?”

So yeah… if you stopped over at the dealership to see the color options or engine options or (God Forbid!) grab a brochure, you had better be prepared to fend-off a salesperson!

“I’M JUST LOOKING!”

And if you were one out of 20 who were there to actually buy the car, you really had NO IDEA what to expect as far as a discount — as close as you could come to a Fair Price Estimate were stories about your neighbor’s friend’s uncle bragging about his price…

Today? What’s to fear?

I know the colors… if I want to see them in-person I’m already pretty far along the decision-path.

Brochure? What’s that???

Engine combination? Horsepower? (How many electric watts in a horse, anyway??).

Price? Geez Louise… I have 10 estimated prices in 10 minutes… I know it’s somewhere around here…

C’mon — customers know more than salespeople these days by an order of magnitude — there can be no logical argument that “knowledge” or the lack thereof is means of fear or intimidation.

So, is “Fear” really still a motivator? Of what is there to be afraid?  Are vendors and owners still holding-on to the assumption as a familiar convenience?

What does it mean if customers are not afraid or intimidated?

Shout-out over in the dealer forums!!